Florida-Tennessee: Why Can't We Beat Bruce Pearl and the Volunteers?

Princess CooperCorrespondent IFebruary 1, 2009

I am starting to expect this every time we play the Volunteers. It was Game Day though. We were on the big stage. Bobby Knight and Jay Bilas had picked us to win. Better yet, we had been playing good ball.

We came off a close loss to South Carolina. We go in Vanderbilt and take over the gym. We take on Georgia at home. Forced an early exit for Dennis Felton. (And, I am not sure I agree with that decision by Georgia but, not my team and maybe another article for another day.)

But here we are, Calathes off of a triple double, Hodge not playing his best ball but still a main cog in the wheel, Tyus, for what we are asking of him he is doing a good job. Parson, lights out at Vanderbilt and starting to show some toughness inside, and Werner, who has his moments but not consistent enough for me.

I thought if we played zone against a team who has one of the worst three point shot percentages. And, Pearl even stated at half-time that, "he knew that we were going to play zone. I thought we would have a chance no matter if it's away or not, playing zone or not. But, the unthinkable happened. Calathes gets two early fouls.

And we can't buy a basket. Game over? No, I still think we still have a chance. I thought still that we play and played better ball than the Volunteers. Instead, we go in and completely fall apart. Now, I can hear Billy Donovan right now: "We as a team should learn something from this."

Tell me what can we learn? That we can't withstand the pressure and get a must win to take the outright lead in the SEC? That Calathes is still just a Sophomore and we can't expect him to be a Taurean Green just yet? That Billy Donavan can be out-coached?

That we really don't have a inside presence and Kadji, Chaney, and Shipman are not the answer quite yet? So, is this a wait until next team? If so, someone please write me and tell me.

I am tired of losing to the Volunteers in basketball. We don't do it in football. Even when we had the 04's we couldn't seem to put it together against these guys. Bruce Pearl is now 6-1 against us. Can any other team boast that kind of us right now?

They (Tennessee) played lights out last night. And. I truly expected our guys to match their intensity. It never happened.

Now, comes the Gamecocks at home. And, they seem to be on a roll. If someone had said, the Gamecocks would be in a three way tie for the lead in the SEC at this point in the season with a new head coach," I would have said, "no way."

But, here we are Gators. South Carolina will be rolling in. And, you owe me Gators. I was at that game in Columbia with maybe twenty other Gator Fans. And, we walked out of there with a roar loud enough to shake the building. And we had a lead with three minutes to go. We had plenty of opportunities at the foul line to ice it. We gave that game away.

You owe me, Gator Basketball, and I am looking for payment in full in Gainesville.